Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,
Due to the difficult situation we are in concerning the COVID-19 outbreak, the Leadership Vision Team (LVT) felt the need to share best practices and ways to continue to be the body of Christ. These are fluid times that we are living in. Daily, if not hourly we are given information about the spread of the virus and how to best keep ourselves and loved ones safe. This is a different letter that we send today than one we would have sent last week.
Best practices dictate not gathering for anything with large groups and with the vulnerable and elderly (defined as over 60). This is a decision you have to make as a session as you consider your congregation and it’s participants. Some of our churches have already decided not to hold worship services for the next two weeks with a decision to be made about when to begin to gather for worship. Today the CDC recommended no gatherings of 50 or more for the next 8 weeks. Full recommendation here: https://bit.ly/3ahDsU2 #COVID19 This is a changing situation. We know that Easter is around the corner and you want to make plans.
It is recommended that the leaders of the church gather reliable information. Below is a list of websites that will be helpful for you all. Their decisions are based on science and solid knowledgeable information.
This is a time to figure out new ways to be the church. We regularly “complain” about technology disconnecting us. This is a time to use that technology to stay in touch. We can still communicate with each other via a phone call, texting, email, Skype, Facetime, and Facebook live to name a few options. Social isolation is unhealthy. Social distancing keeps us safe but in contact with each other, We can call each other to check in on members. Facebook can connect us as we share prayers, worship services, and information. Facebook live and live streaming are ways for those that have it to worship together. If you have an email list it is a way to share information and to offer daily prayers and a worship bulletin for Sundays. For those who aren’t connected electronically then, USPS is still delivering, for now, things may change.
Below is a list of tools to use during this time and places to gather information.
Somewhere it says perfect love casts out fear. True, but perfect love does not cast out using common sense, our brains, and the best practices to keep all people safe. And isn’t that what it is about, keeping those we love safe.
Grace and peace,
The Leadership Vision Team
From the denomination regarding COVID resources https://www.pcusa.org/covid19/?fbclid=IwAR1c2SjoT0HBNNKob4sUAy4GDNJoCSguQ83mLNDg1q6bol0PZ5t7YfE_IPM
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: www.cdc.gov
The World Health Organization: www.who.int
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services: www.hhs.gov
PA Department of Health https://www.health.pa.gov
Zoom Meeting https://zoom.us/home?zcid=2478 There is a free version which allows for 40 minute meetings with up to 100 people in attendance.